Sunday, January 30, 2011

brave body image

Today I wore a bikini. I have not worn a bikini for over 2 years. I have a somewhat nice body, but I have body image issues. My body changed after two children. I am sure I am not the only woman that has had their body change after having little people. I am also sure that I am not the only woman that has had some issue with their body throughout their lives. I am actually the happiest I have ever been with my body. I have come from a life battling an eating disorder after facing a huge fear in my life, and beating that fear at the same time as beating my eating disorder.

I have stretch marks. They appeared when I was 37 weeks pregnant with Taj. Today I am learning to love them. Well ok, not love them, but accept them. Accept that this is my body and they will not go away, unless of course I take drastic measures and have surgery. I am not prepared to do this. And the reason being is that I believe we should be happy with our bodies. We should not have to walk around and feel as if every person that walks past and looks us up and down is looking at us for a negative reason. I personally would like to believe that they look because they can see the happiness that is inside you shining through your body. (And if they are looking at you because of negative reasons, then they are not nice people, and not worth the negative thought towards yourself).

I had a lovely comment this week from a local lady. She told me I was glowing. She could see how happy I am, and to witness the change in me over the past 12 months has been amazing. This made my day, and pretty much made my life! Honestly what compliment could trump that one. I think that is something we would all like to hear. To have someone notice that you are truly happy on the inside is such a beautiful moment. Well it was for me. This along with a few other comments in the past week or so has made me realise that it is time for me to face the last body image issue I have. And beat it.

Body image is not just in teenagers, it is within all ages, and people of all shapes and sizes. It is time for me to embrace my stretch marks and accept that they are the lines that made up my pregnant belly. Time to remove the hands.


  1. i just cried long hard tears. i can't wait for the day I can feel the way that you do today. I don't think it is EVER going to happen. I hope it does. Today has been especially hard body image wise, for me.

    I am so, so happy to hear you sound so positive and i KNOW how hard it is to say anything positive about your own body. You do look VERY lovely and I am glad you feel it too!


  2. great post. i think we are all struggling with this issue. i am working my hardest not to model poor self-image behaviour to my daughter and to teach her to understand negative self-talk. we are our own worst enemies.
    thanks for sharing and congratulations!

  3. definitely agree with you both but I am just a little sad to read Jessi's feelings about her own body. Having met her I think she is absolutely gorgeous!!
    I wish I could give you both a big hug.

    I know and I have been through it & still go through it and even though I have mentioned this before, losing someone close to my heart has made me realise that it's all about health.

    without our health we can't be happy & look after these little people we created.

    so what if they changed the way we look, hey, they made me a better person and someone with a bigger heart.

    big gigantic hugs to you Hayley ♥

  4. I think you look HOT!! While I am happy enough with my body (I figure it is what it is) if I had yours - WOWZA would I be wearing that bikini every day! I have followed your blog for a while now and I hope you have been able to realise how strong you are and how you have made such a positive effect on the people that read this!! Thank you for being so honest!

  5. Jessi..... It was hard. I still hid up the beach to do this. I want to be brave and do it tomorrow. I want to be brave and do it every time I put my feet in the sand.

    You are so beautiful, (Cathie is right), and you WILL get there. You just have to give yourself time, and do it when you are ready.

    Body issues have been a big thing for me personally, and it does not matter if you are a large woman, or little, we are all hard on ourselves. I have to do this to love again, because if I cannot truly love me, then I cannot truly love someone else, and Jen is right if we portray bad body images on ourselves, then what does this teach our children? I never want Keely or Taj to have an eating disorder. It really does tear you apart inside.

    Sending you a big hug.... and one day I will wear a bikini with you on the beach xx

  6. wow - this is very cooincidental and I happen to wear my first bikini at the beach today too! And I can totally empathise with all the issues that concerned you - i've had two kids, the stretch marks are there, the boobs aren't what they used to be- but you know what....i made myself a pair of vintage inspired bikini's (altered a little from the pattern!) and strutted my stuff and realised that there were so many other women in bikini's (small, big, whatever) and they were doing it! Do it with confidence, and you're almost there ! I agree with Jen too - i want my kids to be happy and confident in their body and what to model that type of behaviour and be comfortable with my own body.

  7. You go girl! I am so not there with my body after 2 kids. Forced myself to buy a new swimming costume yesterday and the sales assistant couldn't get over my underwhelming response after trying it on! Still handed over the ridiculous amount of money they wanted for it.

  8. Good on you for facing fears head on. I always read your posts and even without knowing you in the real world can definitely sense you are 'glowing'. Credit and power to ya, lady. You look absolutely smashing in that 'kini by the way. As you say, we all have 'issues' with our bodies, so it is about learning to being brave and proud of what we've got.

  9. HOT MAMMA - With a bod like that I would be in a bikini every day, all day, even in winter with the heater belting out just so I could.

    Unfortunately I don't think it will EVER happen to me. I have had body issues for years now, but I could hide my many imperfections quite well before we moved to Australia - beach + summer + sunshine = panic! Don't go there!

    Enjoy Hayley x

  10. I've told you once and I'll tell you again. You're a hottie. HOT DAMN MAMA!

    I was thinking of you this weekend, and thinking what an awesome, inspiring, positive, excellent,buoyant brilliant woman you are.

    RAD post. x

  11. You look amazing!! If I could look like you in bathers I would be one happy lady!! We all have insecurities about something, regardless of shape and size! Good on you, and yes, take those hands away!

  12. Well said Hayley!!
    You look awesome and you should be proud of yourself after having an eating disorder and coming out the other side. GO YOU !!
    Yes I have always had a body issue too but over the last few years I have learnt to grow to accept the way I am and be happy. I still have moments were I am not happy but I am learning to accept myself.
    Thank you for posting this and realising that you are fabulous. xx

  13. I love this post, I unfortunately have not lost the weight from my 2 kids, but oh well, I do what I can. You on the other hand look amazing and I think stretch marks are not a bad thing as it shows that we are moms. I always enjoy reading your posts, although I don't comment much and I'm working on it.

  14. I found your blog while searching for salt-water sandals. :)

    This is such a beautiful post that I couldn't help commenting. You look stunning. I have never thought stretch marks were a terrible thing on women! It just shows that you're a mom and your body did an amazing thing of making a baby. I hope you can feel proud, especially since you lost all the weight. Thank you for being open/honest on the big scary internet. :)

    * Julia



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